Donnelly’s Weir

Leaders: Alan Veevers and David Hewitt

Donnelly’s Weir is in the Yarra Ranges National Park, 3km from Healesville in an open forest area. It is the start of the Bicentennial National Trail up the East Coast of Australia to Cooktown in Queensland, a 5330km walking trail and the longest marked trekking route of its kind in the world.

We reached the car park by crossing a shallow ford and explored the area near the old weir looking at the flora and keeping an eye and an ear out for the resident birds. The tracks were good and much time was spent identifying botanical specimens.

After morning tea we walked alongside the aqueduct that carries water from the Maroondah Dam to Melbourne. The main eucalypts were Manna Gum, Mountain Grey Gum and Messmate. The middle and lower stories had acacias, pomaderris, bedfordia, and other mountain forest shrubs, with tree ferns in the moist gullies. Birds included Golden Whistler, several different honeyeaters and parrots.

Highlights were:

  • a Sacred Kingfisher resting on a dead branch overhanging the aqueduct track
  • bird orchids and some Mountain Greenhoods on the forest track margins
  • magnificent Manna Gums by the creeks
  • the almost abrupt change from dominant Gums to a Messmate/Peppermint mix after climbing only about thirty metres.

Bird List

Australian Wood Duck
Australian White Ibis
Masked Lapwing
Gang-gang Cockatoo
Little Corella
Sulphur-crested Cockatoo
Australian King-Parrot
Crimson Rosella
Fan-tailed Cuckoo
Laughing Kookaburra
Sacred Kingfisher
White-throated Treecreeper
Superb Fairy-wren
Spotted Pardalote
Brown Thornbill
Red Wattlebird
Lewin’s Honeyeater
Yellow-faced Honeyeater
White-naped Honeyeater
Eastern Yellow Robin
Crested Shrike tit
Golden Whistler
Grey Shrike thrush
Grey Fantail
Australian Magpie
Pied Currawong
Welcome Swallow
Common Blackbird
Common Myna

Short plant list

Silver Wattle (Acacia dealbata)
Early Black Wattle (A.decurrens)
Lightwood (A. implexa)
Cinnamon Wattle (A. leprosa)
Sallow Wattle (A. longifolia)
Blackwood (A. melanoxylon)
Bidgee Widgee (Acaena novae-zelandiae)
Maiden-hair Fern (Adiantum aethiopicum)
Blanket Bush (Bedfordia arborescens)
Water Fern (Blechnum nudum)
Drooping Cassinia (Cassinia arcuata)
Shiny Cassinia (Cassinia longifolia)
Common Bird-orchid (Chiloglottis valida)
Old-man’s Beard (Clematis aristata)
Love Creeper (Comesperma volubile)
Prickly Currant (Coprosma quadrifida)
Rough Tree Fern (Cyathea australis)
Tall Sundew (Drosera peltata ssp. auriculata)
Mountain Grey Gum (Eucalyptus cypellocarpa)
Messmate (E. obliqua)
Narrow-leaf Peppermint (E. radiata)
Manna Gum (E. viminalis)
Cherry Ballart (Exocarpos cupressiformis)
Twining Glycine (Glycine clandestina)
Common Raspwort (Gonocarpus tetragynus)
Hop Goodenia (Goodenia ovata)
Golden Tip (Goodia lotifolia)
Austral Mulberry (Hedycarya angustifolia)
Daisy (Helichrysum sp.)
Tree Violet (Melicytus dentatus)
Sword Sedge (Lepidosperma sp.)
Prickly Tea-tree (Leptospermum continentale)
Spiny Mat-rush (Lomandra longifolia)
Wattle Mat-rush (L. filiformis)
Tree Lomatia (Lomatia Fraseri)
Snowy Daisy-bush (Olearia lirata)
Wonga Vine (Pandorea pandorana)
Hazel Pomaderris (Pomaderris aspera)
Austral Bracken (Pteridium esculentum)
Mountain Greenhood (Pterostylus alpina)
Native Raspberry (Rubus parvifolius)
Toothed Nightshade (Solanum prinophyllum)
Dusty Miller (Spyridium parvifolium)
Trigger Plant (Stylidium sp.)
Native Violet (Viola hederacea)